One of South Africa’s top rappers, known as AKA, was murdered outside a restaurant in the city of Durban.
Kiernan Forbes was killed along with his close friend, the chef and entrepreneur Tebello ‘Tibz’ Motsoane.The pair are thought to have been on their way to a nightclub for a performance as part of Forbes’ birthday celebrations when they were shot.
Forbes began his musical career as part of the rap group Entity before he launched his solo career, winning several awards in South Africa for his music.
He was also celebrated internationally, with several nominations for a Black Entertainment Television (BET) Award in the US and an MTV Europe Music Award.
Police spokesperson Colonel Robert Netshiunda has told the BBC that the rapper and his friend were walking to their car when they were approached by two armed men who shot them at close range.
The assailants then fled the scene on foot. Hours before his death, the 35-year-old posted about his upcoming album, Mass Country, which is set for release later this month.
South Africa has one of the highest murder rates in the world and recent shootings have been happening more often.
Celebrities Somizi, Nandi Madida, Tbo Touch, Thando Thabethe – as well as United States producer Swizz Beatz – have all taken to social media on Saturday to pay tribute to Fela in Versace rapper AKA. Swizz took to his Instagram story to remember his South African friend.
He wrote: “Damn King, rest easy. One of South Africa’s greats.”
American rapper Bas also paid tribute to AKA: “Damn this fu**in tragic as hell. South Africa, I’m so sorry for your loss. @akaworldwide always showed me love and hospitality every time we crossed paths. Always welcomed me with open arms. Rest easy king.”
The World Is Yours rapper Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes’ death has sent shock waves through South Africa, who woke up to the news that he had been killed in cold blood in Durban on Friday evening.
The Megacy, as well as celebrities such as Nandi Madida, Donald, Da Les and Black Coffee, flooded Twitter with condolence messages.
Nandi Madida wrote: “Rest my brother … this hurts. Thinking about your beautiful daughter and loved ones in general. Thank you for the good times and laughs … I always enjoyed working with you.”